Whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle feeding, introducing solid food is cherished by every parent. It’s a wonderful time; you get to see your baby react to different textures and tastes. Exploring a plethora of recipes together, you find food that your baby likes and dislikes. This can also be an incredibly stressful time too.
If you’ve come so far in your parenting journey, then you’ll know babies can be expensive. From cribs to baby strollers, big-ticket items can often cost you hundreds of dollars. However, you can lose a further hundred if you’re not keeping an eye on your baby’s food budget. Yes! with an individual jar of baby food costing up to $1 and your baby eating at least 3 times a day, that can easily add up.
Stay smart with these budget friendly and time efficient tips to help save money on baby food. Then you can decide what you want to do with your savings!
You’re savings begin even before you’ve left your home. That’s right you could be saving right now as you read this.
Grocery prices are on the rise; weekly budgets are always being stretched as you try to shop as efficiently as possible. Having a little one doesn’t always give you the luxury to plan meticulously. This can lead to impulse buying.
Scheduling time out to write down a meal plan and grocery list can really help in being more organized with your weekly shop.
2) Shopping your cupboard/fridge:
Before you go out and purchase more food, shop your cupboard. We can get into a habit of buying groceries every week without thinking about it. Once in a while, challenge yourself to only use up items in your fridge or cupboard. You’ll be amazed at how much you can make with the food that was already in your house. You can also get creative and improvise.
3) Baby food coupons:
Most grocery stores have coupons that can be used in store or online. Coupons can be found in magazines, newspapers or even online. It’s best to keep a separate file at home if you are into cutting coupons to store and organize. Check your local stores to make sure you’re not missing out on any deals.
Pro tip: Maximise your coupons by using them during sales.
4) Bulk Buying:
You must have heard of wholesale stores that sell groceries in bulk. How does that come to your advantage? Buying baby food in bulk is significantly less when compared to regular quantities. This way, your per product price is less, and your bank in the savings. This would be ideal for products that are processed and have a later expiry date.
Pro tip: Products close to expiry will have special discounts on them. Keep an eye out for them.
5) Online Shopping:
It would not be a money saving article without the mention of Amazon. Buying baby food online is a gold mine for deals. The best ways to shop smart and save on Amazon are:
- Go through the Lightening deals every day to score some amazing deals
- Use the subscribe and save option to maximise savings
- Buying baby food in bulk.
- Amazon Prime for quick hassle free deliveries
6) HOMEMADE GOODNESS:
Homemade baby food is the easiest way to save on your baby food bill. Who has got the time? You do! Honestly, it doesn’t take any time at all, with the right tools you can bulk prep your food and store them. It may take an hour on the weekend from start to finish with minimal clean up.
If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, then read along. We’ve got all the scoop on bulk prep. PREPARING BABY FOOD:
Nourishing your baby with fresh homemade food is truly a joy as a mother. The best way to make baby food at home. You know exactly what is going in the food. It’s not hard to make baby food and can be mess free. Here are some time saving- must have tools:
A stick immersion blender is a great tool to have around regardless of if you have a baby or not. However, when making baby food, it can come in handy to blend steamed vegetables into a puree.
An adjustable steam basket enables you to steam any fruit and vegetables in a pot that you already have. There are steam and puree machines on the market, but a simple steamer can get the job done.
Storage containers are a must have if you are bulk preparing baby food. Freezing is the best way to preserve the freshness of the food you have just pureed. Once the food is frozen, you can defrost it in the fridge overnight or in warm water to bring it to a desirable temperature.
7) DITCH THE CONVENIENCE:
As a busy mum on the go, it can be tempting to reach for convenience meals that are pre packaged. Not only are they expensive but you can’t be sure of exactly what goes into the baby food.
Pre-plan ahead in order to ensure that there is always food on hand. When going out and about, there is no need to pack special snacks for your child. A banana, some natural yogurt or raisins can be cheap snacks that are great to grab and go.
Gimmicky snacks specially designed for children are filled with artificial flavouring and preservative. Keeping in simple with fruit snacks will be beneficial to your child and your pocket.
8) KEEP IT SIMPLE:
The key to saving money doesn’t lie in Pinterest boards or blogs but rather in keeping it simple. Often times mums can get into creating lavish meals for their children inspired by the internet. This may mean going out of your way to buy produce that can be expensive.
Try to source your food locally as much as possible. Trying to include exotic fruit and vegetables can needlessly increase your food shop bill. Buying fruit and vegetables that are in season is cheaper too.
If you are buying food that is not in season, try to buy frozen as it can be considerably cheaper than fresh. Also when buying meat for your baby go for cheaper cuts of meat or cheaper varieties of fish.
9) BABY EATS WHAT YOU EAT!
Babies don’t need special food prepared for them, especially after 10 months. It’s not hard to take out a little bowl of food for your baby before you add spices to your dish. You can then easily puree this food.
Making your baby eat the food you eat will help her taste buds familiarize itself with home cooked food. When your baby grows up there are high chances they will favour home cooked food.
10) FOOD WASTE:
Food waste is a common problem that parents face when they start introducing their child with solid food. Whether that comes in the form of baby throwing food while eating or if the baby just doesn’t want to touch the food that you have made. Here are some simple ways to eliminate food waste:
- Babies need very little solid food in the beginning. Always make only how much the baby needs. Have an attitude that you can always make more when needed.
- Try not to make complicated food, especially for the baby. Not only is this unnecessary, but when the baby rejects food ( which happens more often than not), there is a high chance that food is going to the bin.
- It’s hard to gauge a babies appetite, if your baby has left some food from his meal then try to reuse the leftover or simply store and offer it the next day.
FOOD BEFORE ONE IS FUN:
Don’t get lost in the complexities of nutrition or preservatives, it can easily become overwhelming. Remember that food is fun for a baby. Avoid making it a stressful situation, both for you and the baby. If it seems a lot then take a step back.
What are your frugal ways to save money on baby food?
Let us know in the comments below!